Winteringham School Canteen

Winteringham Local History and Genealogy

Winteringham School Canteen

Winteringham School Canteen

Above: Winteringham School canteen and kitchen in 1990

Winteringham School Canteen (to give it the name it had in the 1950s - no “dining room” at that time - children and workers ate in canteens), was used not just for the purpose its name implies, but for a host of others too.

Kath Burkill is renowned throughout the area for her meals in the canteen to several generations of Winteringham schoolchildren, but the canteen also became the place where film and slideshows were shown to the pupils in the fifties, where there were Christmas parties ... or at least the feast that went with each party, jumble sales, and the mother and baby clinic.

Here are some people’s memories of the canteen.  We should be pleased to receive more.  To do so, please click here.


Flyer Robinson:

This picture brings back memories that make your mouth water - like the winter salad or the bowls of mince with fried bread cut into triangles placed around it, to the tureens of mashed potatoes or if it was summer time new potatoes, and cabbage or carrots that one of the pupils from each table went to collect from Miss Burkill and her staff at the hatch. Fish, chips and peas once a week. This was proper food!  Then there were the puddings or sweets if you were posh like the chocolate sponge and chocolate sauce to go with it, or semolina and rose hip  syrup, to the dreaded frog spawn - not one of my favourites!  Those were the days!  Good food and not having to be politically correct like today.  Who said all progress was for the better?

Christmas parties - take your own plate, beaker and spoon with your name on them. Did we not take things like buns and swiss rolls for the parties?

Dining Room 2008

Christine Hammond:

Do you remember having to take your own plate for Christmas parties and the left over 'goodies' being given out at morning play next day?  My children absolutely adored mince pies and were very disappointed that no one took them for the Christmas parties so each year I had to bake and send a dozen mince pies.

When Michelle was a baby I took her to the baby clinic.  It was a real afternoon out - all the mums got dressed up and the babies were in their best.  After we had finished at the clinic you went with your 'special friends' for a pram push around the village.   If my memory is correct by the time Matt was born I had to go to Winterton to have him weighed and checked over.

Elaine Harrison (Ogg)

My greatest memories of the canteen at Winteringham are of the blackout curtains at the windows.  I presume they were a relic of wartime as it wasn’t long after the war that I started school.  Someone had embroidered the black material with coloured threads  to make them look a little prettier.

I also remember the long tables and benches on either side.  If a teacher wasn’t sat on one end a “Dinner Monitor” served the rest of the table.

I loved my school dinners which when I started school cost 9d a day rising to 1 shilling before I left the school.

We ate “proper meals” – meal and two veg.  For puddings typical examples were sponge & custard or milk pudding and prunes.  We always lined the prune stones up on the side of the plate counting “Tinker, tailor, soldier, sailor, rich man, poor man, beggar man, thief” In summer we would go bramble picking on the old railway lines and could sell them to school for 3d a pound.  After this we might have bramble and apple pies with custard.

I especially remember the Christmas Dinner as we had real Christmas Puddings with, I think, a three penny bit inside. Certainly it was always exciting to see who would get the coin.  I don’t remember anyone ever swallowing one.

John Kirk:

Being probably the only child who NEVER stayed to a dinner throughout my entire primary school life, means I cannot comment on the school dinners themselves, but by reputation, and my sister’s say so, they were extremely good.  But I remember other times in the canteen - when Miss Brown or Miss Malone took advantage of the blackout blinds to show us a black and white filmstrip, almost always on a nature topic if I remember right.  I think that once a year, a travelling film projectionist brought some films for our amusement.  Again nature wasn’t far off the agenda with some Walt Disney nature specials, but I think that there were also children’s comedy films, again in black and white.

For the Christmas parties we took our own plates, with our names on as mentioned above.  Before the big day, Miss Brown would have organised us all to bring in various ingredients for the meal, and there always seemed plenty, and to spare.  Various mum’s would ‘wait’ on we children.  I adored then, and still do, those meat paste sandwiches!

There were eight tables, with a form or bench each side, and I am told that the teachers would sit at the ends on a chair on a rotating basis so that they ate with every child every couple of days or so.

There were regular mother and baby clinics, when we could divert our gaze from our work and idly watch the mums with their high-wheeled prams to-ing and fro-ing to the canteen.  When they came out, they always seemed to be clutching at least one tin of National Dried Milk.  The tins themselves were an institution - not so much for their original purpose of holding the milk, but they were so large and well made that the school used many for the storage of pencils, crayons, rulers and almost anything else that could be kept in them.  They were white with all the text in dark blue.

A less happy memory of the canteen was of a game of football during a playtime one summer.  Being in goal - between the regulation jackets eight strides apart, it fell to me to save a rifled shot from Tony Button.  I couldn’t get near it as it flew into the non-existent net, and the next thing we all heard was the tinkling glass as the ball smashed one of the windows.  Before the dreaded owning up to Miss Brown, came the compulsory apportionment of blame.  Was it Tony for the shot, or me for failing to stop it?  I think the jury is still out!

Winteringham School Canteen - Dining room  in 2008

The dining room in 2008



Have you tried the other Winteringham Websites?
Winteringham, Parish Council (includes current news items, photographs, weather forecasts, calendar of events, etc etc) Don Burton World of Nature Photo Archive (modern photographs of the village), What the Papers have said about Winteringham (since July 2004), High Resolution Historical Photographs, Winteringham Film Archive, Winteringham Football Club, Winteringham Nature Site, Winteringham Recipes, Winteringham Sales, Winteringham Camera Club, Winteringham Village Hall, Winteringham Chapel

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